Christmas Home Tour 2016

With only 10 sleeps until Christmas, we're all moving at hyper speed. That's why I'm encouraging you to pour yourself a drink, find a comfy spot and enjoy our Christmas Home Tour. Because I'm sure you have nothing better to do...says no one this time of year. Ever. 

But, hey, let's do it anyway. 

Every Christmas I love this wall paper even more. It's like it was made for this time of year. Or just made for me to love it. Either way, it works.

Digging the plaid this year. And this dried out boxwood garland that promptly died two days after I brought it into my house...I'm going with it. Fortunately, it doesn't shed like pine garland. Yeah for small wins - especially this time of year. 

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I'm not even going to lie to you - my Mom was here the first weekend of December and "threw together" (her words) this stunning arrangement. When I throw something together it doesn't look anything like this. And yes, Mom, I've had to replace one of the poinsettias already. As predicted.

Remember how I was all...a quiet, simple Christmas...yeah, my simple tree got hit hard with the sparkle. I lost that battle, among others, but the kids love it. So that's something. 'Tis the season!

This is barely a Christmas shot...I really just rearranged my ever slow growing collection of blue and white and wanted to show you...but there's a poinsettia so it counts. Right?

I spy an elf, always watching. This time she has a front row seat to our awesome table manners and nightly squabbles over who got more veggies. Lucky, lucky.

Year's past I've kept the vintage toys in the playroom, but this year they are taking pride of place under the family tree. They remind me of my family, and my dad's family, and our celebrations when I was a kid...yeah, I'm a softy like that.

One thing I did manage to stick to, a simple mantel. Faux and real greens layered together with a couple of large scale pine cones - this makes me happy. 

May you have a happy and healthy holiday season with friends, family and everyone you love!

Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy. I'm certainly trying too. 

Holiday Back Porch 2014

One of the many benefits of living in the South is the mild weather this time of year. In fact, on the weekends we've been know to enjoy a cocktail or two on the porch after the kids go to bed - especially after we purchased a patio heater from Home Depot a couple of months ago. Just the other night we were chatting away about decorating the back porch for Christmas this year and even threw out the idea of putting up a tree.


Remember when I said I bought a shed-load of deeply discounted arborvitae? Some made their way to the front porch and even more landed on the back porch. Instead of one big tree, we added 5 smaller trees! 3 replaced the potted hollies on the steps and 2 flank the french doors - and they are all wrapped in lights. Not surprisingly!
Welcome to Christmas on the porch.


Our temperatures may be mild, but it's not warm at night. We like to keep the chill at bay with a warm beverage, in Christmas mugs naturally, and a snuggly blanket.


The poinsettias like to visit outside when the temperatures are up, but I bring them in at night. It's definitely an extra step that some may not want to bother with, but nothing beats that pop of red when you're looking to really highlight the season.


When the containers at the front of the house went from fall to winter, we moved the ornamental cabbages to the back porch.  I love that they can transition from one season to the next.  More bang for my buck!
Speaking of containers, we replaced the ferns in the hanging baskets with white pansies, fresh cut greenery and pinecones. We've been living in Charlotte for a year and a half now and it still seems strange to see flowers blooming in December. Fortunately, it's a change I think I can get used to.


The reindeer container found a new home outside on the coffee table. This guy has definitely made the rounds throughout our homes over the years - it's nice to see him outside this time. As per usual, he's stuffed full of fresh cut greens and pinecones.


Christmas lights on the back porch and the front porch - I am one lucky girl! 

Happy Holidays indeed.

until next time, 

Holiday Front Entry 2014

I had every intention of getting this post out on Monday morning, but you know what? Life happened and the post didn't. Instead of decorating outside, Saturday we stayed inside due to rain and the whole family got in on the Christmas decorating. Who knew kids could be so opinionated?  It was really fun and funny actually. And on Sunday we headed to the mountains for our annual choose and cut Christmas tree adventure. This year John was in charge of selecting our tree, he was bound and determined to steer clear of last year's slender Christmas bush


While we were in the mountains on Sunday, we grabbed a whole bunch of fresh cut greens so today I was finally able to start in on our front porch decor. It's not a huge departure from last year, but we tried a couple of new things that I gathered from the inspiration post last week and I'm pretty happy with how it all turned out.
First thing you might notice - the potted arborvitae. I actually found a great deal (read: close out!! at $6 a piece) at HomeDepot and scored a ton of these arborvitae, which we will hopefully use to create a natural hedge in the backyard after they finish their Christmas duties, of course. 


Next up, the containers with lit grapevine orbs. Can I just tell you how much I love, love, love how these guys turned out?? The containers are stuffed full of fresh cut greens - lots of varieties and textures to keep it interesting - and on top are grapevine orbs, wrapped in Christmas lights. I found the orbs at Michaels and wrapped the lights around them - so easy! Plus, the grapevine helps keep the containers looking good during the day!


This year we also opted to forgo the traditional wreath and hang a swag of fresh greenery. It's nothing mind-blowing, but I think it's nice to mix it up a bit sometimes. 


In case you couldn't tell from the inspiration post, I am really digging garland this year. I always wanted to add it to our house in Chicago, but the side entry just didn't really warrant it. To be honest, the big black monstrosity of an awning almost kept me from using garland this year, but I figured - what the heck! Let's give it a go and I am so glad I did because I love it. Just a little extra somethin'-somethin', you know?!?


Is there anything better than Christmas lights? Honestly. I just don't know.

Happy Holidays! 

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until next time,